Due to the force and the nature of a plane accident, survivability is highly unlikely and will most often result in death to the plane's occupants. Because of the high probability of airplane fatalities in the event of a crash, much effort is put into maintaining safe air travel. Regulatory agencies like the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) set standards and rules that govern all aviation in order to avoid fatal crashes. While advances in technology have caused the number of commercial airline accidents to decrease in the last decade, the number of small plane crashes has mostly remained the same. In 2011 the NTSB found that, out of all aviation-related fatal crashes, 94 percent involved general aviation, which includes small planes and helicopters.
Although the chances of being involved in a fatal plane crash while in an aircraft is generally very low, the chances of survival if involved in a fatal crash are also quite low. According to information provided by the Aviation Safety Network, it is possible that only four percent of those involved in an airplane crash will survive.
Investigating a Fatal Crash
The NTSB is tasked with performing investigations into each fatal crash in order to determine the most likely cause. However, many fatal crashes are so devastating that the true cause of accident is difficult to determine, even for experienced investigators with the NTSB. A USA TODAY investigation in 2013 found that many fatal crashes that the NTSB reported as being caused by pilot error, were, in fact, determined to be caused by design or manufacturing defects, according to court documents. The discovery process that is available only in a court of law, is one of the best tools to uncover internal company records and expose the parties truly responsible for a fatal crash.
While most crashes result in the death of those aboard, not all do, and not all should. Some crashes may be determined by experts to have been a survivable crash. If that is the finding, a careful investigation must be undertaken to determine what the immediate cause was for each person. For instance, the victims might have survived the impact forces, but died from the effects of a preventable post-crash fire, or some other post-crash event.
Plane crash fatalities require intensive investigation and preparation of evidence. Our attorneys are experienced in investigating the cause of a fatal crash to determine who is at fault. We work closely with other experts, including forensic experts who analyze the evidence to determine the cause of death of the victims. If you are considering a wrongful death action on behalf of a loved one, you need to make sure that the attorney you retain is experienced in fatal crash cases involving aviation accidents. At Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman, you can be confident that our extensive experience in aviation law will be an asset to your case.
Legal Options After a Fatal Crash
When a loved one is lost in a fatal crash it can be difficult to know what to do next. Very few people have thought about what might happen if they lose someone in an aviation accident and they are unaware of the full extent of their legal rights following a fatal crash. Sadly, many families are bombarded by information in an attempt to get them to quickly settle their claims. Time and time again we have seen that airline or insurance representatives urge a quick settlement or threaten to prolong the legal process if their offer is refused, as their allegiance is only to the airline and its insurance carrier, not the passenger. For this reason we strongly encourage people to consult an experienced aviation lawyer after a crash.
In our experience, many of our clients feel that they are victimized twice: once by the incident itself and then again when the airlines try to minimize their loss. They are then put through the grueling process of having to prove their damages. We understand the complex aspects of aviation law, the defense tactics used by airlines and aircraft manufacturers, and what it takes to prevail on our clients' behalf. When we are hired in a fatal plane crash, we lift this burden from our clients, allowing them to focus on their healing and putting their lives back together.
At Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman, our aviation attorneys are experienced in working with the families of those involved in a fatal crash. We are sympathetic to the devastation a tragedy can inflict upon a victim's family. While we know that while monetary compensation will never replace such a loss, it can alleviate additional financial stresses that are associated with the loss of a loved one. It also puts pressure on those responsible to correct and improve the conditions that brought about the crash in the first place. Our attorneys will assist you and your family in recovering your economic losses so that you can focus on rebuilding your life.
Our fatal plane crash attorneys have a record of successfully helping hundreds of families obtain financial compensation after the death of a loved one. Baum, Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman is based in Los Angeles, California and may be able to assist your family with wrongful death cases that stem from a fatal crash, regardless of where it occurred, including:
- Mass disasters
- U.S. airline accident
- Small plane crash
- International airline accident
- Helicopter crash
- Sightseeing air tour accidents
- Charter plane crash
- Military plane or helicopter crash
- Air ambulance accident
We are proud to have resolved aviation disaster cases against major airlines such as Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Aero Mexico, Asiana Airlines, British European Airways, China Eastern Airlines, Delta Airlines, EgyptAir, Korean Air, Pacific Southwest Airlines, Singapore Airlines, SAS-Scandinavian Airline Systems, Southwest Airlines, SwissAir, TACA Airlines, TWA, United Airlines, US Airways, among others. We have also handled many aviation fatalities and injuries involving aircraft manufacturers such as Airbus, Boeing, Bombardier, Honeywell, McDonnell Douglas, Raytheon, Bell Helicopter Textron, Robinson Helicopter Company, Piper Aircraft, and more. Contact our experienced aviation attorneys for a free no-obligation consultation about a fatal plane crash.
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